How Sputnik Was a Gift To me And My Father
November 27, 2013
My father was a career Air Force explorer. When Sputnick hit the news, Dad and I started a news clipping scrapbook. We kept that book together until I grew up from his young protege into my own adult explorations. Because of my father, I have dreamed of Europa, not missed a single comet, watch as many meteor showers and Aurora Borealis displays as weather in Southeast Alaska permits, and take every opportunity to marvel at the universe.. For years Dad and I kept that scrapbook, discussed the missions, performed our own experiments and calculations, and were truly early universal explorers of the late 1950's through the 1970's. The scrapbook was lost in a fire, and my father has left Earth, (but I still think he is Sirius winking sat me). Even though I am now an old man, I still camp out EVERY clear night here in Southeastern Alaska just to see what i can see, and dream of my father who inspired me to always reach beyond my grasp in astrophysics and geology. Thanks, Dad, and thanks to my colleagues in the Planetary Society who carry on my Father's legacy by keeping me interested and involved.
An asteroid or comet headed for Earth is the only large-scale natural disaster we can prevent. Working together to fund our Shoemaker NEO Grants for astronomers, we can help save the world.